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Wednesday, April 28, 2010

The Writer's Mentor: A Guide to Putting Passion on Paper Book Review

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 The Writer's Mentor: A Guide to Putting Passion on Paper Book Review

About the Book: In The Writers Mentor, bestselling author, teacher, and writing coach Cathleen Rountree addresses the most common dilemmas of both aspiring and professional writers. Written in a question-and-answer format, this book stands apart from other books on writing by its linking of practical information on effective writing strategies with inspirational stories from the lives of famous writers. 

Cathleen Rountree responds to such questions as: How do I get ideas for writing? What should I do when I am stuck and just staring at a blank page? What is the best time of day to write? How do I set a writing schedule? What can I do to achieve a state of "flow"� when writing? 

In anwering these questions, she shares not only what she has learned from her own experiences in writing and publishing eight books, but also many of the writing secrets of famous literary figures--from fiction, nonfiction, and poetry. Included are tips from Anne Tyler, Mark Twain, Arthur Miller, Margaret Atwood, Tennessee Williams, Maya Angelou, Ernest Hemingway, Diane Ackerman, Virginia Woolf, Isabel Allende, Pablo Neruda, Doris Lessing, and more. Included in each chapter is a feature called "The Writer's Mentor Suggests," which gives readers a list of concrete suggestions and tips around the writing topic. A wonderful feature in every chapter is a look at the writing life through films such as The Shining, Bridget Jones' Diary, and Shakespeare in Love.

Our Take: I'm an aspiring writer myself, so I've delved into quite a few books on the subject of writing.  What makes the Writer's Mentor stand apart is the format.  Its basically like a large FAQ with a question - answer format.  After reading so many overly wordy books, this one is a breath of fresh air.

The book delves into questions from "What is the best time of day to write?" to "How do I overcome discouragement?".    Author Cathleen Roundtree does a fantastic and practical job of addressing so many issues and really helps to give a feeling of confidence and preparation when I went to write afterwards.  I've since referred to the book many a time for assurance.  Its a fantastic book and is ideal for anyone interested in writing at any level.